Non-linear exploration-based maps with random player starts?

Wed Jul 14, 2021 11:06 am

This is an idea I've thought about for a while. It seems most maps, even non-linear or open ones, typically are based around the player starting in a set location and finding some way to progress. I find that the net effect of this is that once the player knows the map, an "optimal" progression route typically appears, usually via trial and error as the player makes progress, dies, restarts the map, and follows their progress a bit further.

I'm wondering if any maps are known which allow a more true non-linear progression by having the player start in randomized locations on each run (probably using the RandomPlayerStarts G/ZDoom MAPINFO property), and having nested unlock areas or even multiple valid ways of solving the map (multiple exit switches for example).

I intend to try and make such maps myself when/if I find the time to do so, of course. I'm just curious if this is something that's been done before.

8-)

Sidebar, I've had some success using Oblige maps with a ZScript LevelPostProcessor that changes all the monsters on a map to player starts and using the RandomPlayerStarts property, but of course Oblige maps aren't really designed to be solvable this way and have inherently linear construction. It's interesting when playing with a mod that allows you to break map progression anyway (such as Hideous Destructor) and works okay with deathmatch starts + DM mode too.

Re: Non-linear exploration-based maps with random player sta

Wed Jul 14, 2021 11:12 am

Caligari87 wrote:I'm wondering if any maps are known which allow a more true non-linear progression by having the player start in randomized locations on each run (probably using the RandomPlayerStarts G/ZDoom MAPINFO property), and having nested unlock areas or even multiple valid ways of solving the map (multiple exit switches for example).

MouldyOldVoid, by zrrion the insect, has random player starts. Though the map progression quickly converges IIRC -- no puzzles that are to be solved differently based on where you started...